Thursday, June 21, 2018

2018 Wilderness Report #3

Greetings all. Ryan here, writing for a change… Nathan has been busy the last few days flying and guiding. 

A Central Lake trophy walleye
It is currently a tale of two seasons here in the Opasquia Provincial Park. For some inhabitants it is summer - a few others are clinging on to spring. The birds have all made their nesting grounds. We haven’t seen any flights of northbound migrants for over a week. This bodes well for flying ourselves. Geese and Cessnas don’t mix well. Conversely, the Hartles and I have to prepare for a dive bomb attack anytime we try to get to the generator shed at Central - a robin has taken up residence inside and is quite protective of her chicks. 

All of the bigger critters are out and about too. There have been several sightings of moose and bear. Thankfully they have remained out in the wilds so far, but it is a good reminder to always keep a clean camp. 

Shadow’s nemesis, “The Beaver” has begun its nightly swim past the dock - a right of summer for the both of them. 

The fish, however, are still hanging onto their spring-time patterns. The walleye continue to relate to shallow mud-flats and flowing water /channels. Wind blown shores are producing well too. The fish are feeding ravenously. Many boats have reported numbers in the hundreds daily and many groups are tallying catches in the thousands for the week! Lighter jigs continue to be favored, but no reports on any preferred color combos yet - seems they’ll eat just about anything. Various colors of Berkley Ripple shad tails have been a new favorite jig tail for Nathan as they are more durable than Berkley Gulp. 

The big winner for walleyes at Central yesterday was Ellen A. with a pair of dandy’s (28” and 29”).  The outposts are also reporting great walleye fishing. South camp has reported a large number of fish between 24-27". 

Big pike are hanging out in many of the same spots - many fish in the mid-30” to low 40” range have been boated while trolling for walleyes. Casting silver minnows into the shallow weed beds on sunny days has the best technique for moving northern. Smaller bucktails, like a Mepps #5 have been out producing larger baits. 
All smiles with a walleye double. 

Summer is in the air, however, and it is only a matter of time before it is in the water too. As we near the peak duration for daylight hours, the forecast is for several sunny days back to back to back. This will help the weeds continue to develop and bring the water temps. up. Fish will catch on quick and find their usual summer spots. I know I am excited for some top-water fishing around the weed beds really soon. 

And it wouldn’t be summer in the Canadian Shield with out a few fires. The first of the year have popped up in viewing distance from our flight paths. They aren’t of concern to us just yet, but always a good reminder to be extra safe with campfires and shore lunches. 

Summer is just about in full swing here at Big Hook. We hope to hear from and see you soon!

All the best and good luck on the water, 

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